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Bad News: Your 401(k) Won't Give You A Decent Retirement

For nearly 40 years now, we’ve been hearing that 401(k) plans are the key to a comfortable retirement. By giving a tax break to workers contributing part of their paychecks to their retirement nest eggs, the plans were designed to supplement Social Security benefits and employer pensions. Instead, they’ve become substitutes, not supplements, for employer pensions and bulwarks against continuous attacks on Social Security benefits. A new survey from Boston College’s Center for Retirement Research demonstrates, however, that 401(k) plans are destined to fail millions of Americans. They’re not offered by enough employers, they’re not taken up by enough workers, and for most people, their balances aren’t large enough to provide for a decent retirement.

Retirement
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Health Care Costs Could Eat Up Your Retirement Savings

In a perfect world, the largest expenses in retirement would be for fun things like travel and entertainment. In the real world, retiree health-care costs can take an unconscionably big bite out of savings. A 65-year-old couple retiring this year will need $275,000 to cover health-care costs throughout retirement, Fidelity Investments said in its annual cost estimate, out this morning. That stunning number is about 6 percent higher than it was last year. Costs would be about half that amount for a single person, though women would pay a bit more than men since they live longer.

Retirement
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How Long $1 Million Will Last In Retirement

For many soon-to-be retirees, a cool $1 million sounds like substantial savings goal, yet that largely depends on where you live. In some parts of the country, it will barely last a decade. "It's the benchmark everyone has in mind but it's important to be more specific, there's so much range across different states. Your personal situation plays a big role," said Mark Evitt, features editor at GOBankingRates.

Retirement
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Where Did Baby Boomers Go Wrong? This Generation Isn't Financially Prepared For Retirement

Retirement is right around the corner for baby boomers — if they haven’t already entered it — yet so many are financially unprepared. Baby boomers, or those born between 1946 and 1964, expect they’ll need $658,000 in their defined contribution plans by the time they retire, but the average in those employer-sponsored plans is $263,000, according to a survey of 900 investors by financial services firm Legg Mason. Older boomers, who are 65 to 74, have an average of $300,000. Their asset allocation for all of their investments are also conservative, according to QS Investors, an investment management firm Legg Mason acquired in 2014, with 30% in cash, 24% in equities, 22% in fixed income, 4% in non-traditional assets, 8% in investment real estate, 2% in gold and other precious metals and 8% in other investments.

Retirement